County adopts reduced budget
SUMMIT COUNTY – Summit County’s commissioners adopted a dramatically scaled-back budget for 2003, reflecting losses in sales tax revenues and building permits.
Without the cuts, the county was $1.7 million over its targeted $46 million budget, forcing County Manager Ron Holliday to seek cuts in every department and to reduce outside expenses. The commissioners eliminated 11 county positions – six of them already vacant – and asked all department heads to trim their budgets. The county also cut back on its nonprofit donations.
“It was not easy,” Commissioner Gary Lindstrom said. “But we’re going to provide all the basic services to our community.”
Commissioner Bill Wallace said the belt-tightening was a good exercise for the county.
“It was a tough process,” he said. “But anytime you look and make sure you’re getting the most bang for the buck – particularly when its taxpayers’ money – I think the taxpayers come out ahead.”
Lindstrom said the current bleak financial picture won’t last.
“It will get better. It always does. In the almost 29 years I’ve lived in Summit County, we’re about in our third bust cycle. This last boom cycle lasted longer than any of them I remember.”
Highlights of the budget include $19.2 million for the general fund, $3.4 million for the Road and Bridge fund; $1.2 million for the Social Services fund, $938,000 for the Library fund, $6.7 million for the Summit Stage, $330,347 for the E-911 fund, $968,206 for the Communications Center fund, $2 million for the Fleet Maintenance fund, $3.1 million for the capital expenditures fund, $2.3 million for the Open Space fund, $2.9 million for the Summit County Ambulance Service and $2.5 million for the Summit County Landfill fund.
Property tax levies were set at 5.326 mills for the general fund, 1.120 mills for the Road and Bridge Fund, 0.263 mills for the Social Services fund, 0.689 mills for the Library fund, 1.270 mills for capital expenditures fund (per 1993 election), 0.815 mills for another capital expenditures fund, 2.128 mills for Open Space and 0.376 mills for the Public Lands fund.
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